Peanut butter is one of the most iconic American staples, incorporated into lunches and snacks from a young age. While sandwiches are perhaps the most popular peanut butter application, cookies come in as a close second. A classic peanut butter cookie is an easy one-bowl dump recipe, consisting of sugar, butter, eggs, flour, a leavening agent, and peanut butter formed into mounds, smashed with the back of a fork, and baked to chewy, fluffy perfection. However, you can make this recipe even easier by reducing your list of ingredients.
All you need is peanut butter and sweetener to make deliciously nutty cookies that are vegan-friendly and gluten-free. Despite their lack of dairy, eggs, and baking powder, two-ingredient peanut butter cookies are rich, moist, and melt-in-your-mouth crumbly. Instead of white or brown sugar, powdered sugar or a liquid sweetener like honey, maple, or agave syrup is required because they'll seamlessly blend into peanut butter's natural oils and thicken the mixture into a malleable, manageable dough. Powdered sugar contains cornstarch, which is a well-known binding agent, but maple syrup and honey will effectively thicken the dough while also adding unique and complementary flavor notes.
While classic recipes use conventional peanut butter elaborated with added oils, preservatives, and sugar, the two-ingredient recipe will only work with all-natural peanut butter. All-natural peanut butter is simply peanuts and salt, so be sure to check the ingredients label on the back of the jar before using it for these two-ingredient cookies.
Read more: 25 Chocolate Brands, Ranked Worst To Best
Cooking Times, Proportions, And Sweetener Swaps
Cooking times and ingredient proportions vary depending on the sweetener you choose, but most recipes recommend cooking two-ingredient peanut butter cookies at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. For liquid sweeteners, you should add two tablespoons for every cup of all-natural peanut butter. Powdered sugar should be added in a one-to-two ratio with peanut butter. For every cup of peanut butter, add half a cup of powdered sugar. Powdered sugar peanut butter cookies take nine to eleven minutes to bake while the cooking times for maple syrup and honey lie between eight and ten minutes.
Alternatively, you can swap powdered sugar or liquid sweetener for a half-cup of pitted dates or mashed bananas. However, you'll need a food processor to ensure proper distribution and a uniform texture. While the sweeteners will help thicken the peanut butter into a dough-like consistency, it'll still be softer than a typical cookie dough. Consequently, you should refrigerate the dough for at least half an hour to firm it up. Chilling cookie dough is a quintessential technique for more flavorful, soft cookie recipes, anyway.
Because these cookies lack extra fat from butter and eggs, they'll be more crumbly than chewy. Form the cookies into one-tablespoon mounds for a smaller, more cohesive cookie you can gobble up in two or three bites. If you want to amp up the sweetness, you can roll the cookie dough in sugar or add chocolate chips, dried cranberries, or crushed banana chips to the dough.
Read the original article on Tasting Table.